Thurs. Nov. 19, 2020: Die For Your Employer Day 183 — Tired of the Slurs Considered “Cute”

image courtesy of phoenixsierra0 via pixabay.com

Thursday, November 19, 2020

Waxing Moon

Neptune and Uranus Retrograde

Sunny and cold

The latest on the garden is over on Gratitude and Growth.

Shoutout to my Twitter pal Jake, who has birthday today!

Yesterday was just all over the place. I got some decent writing done early in the morning. I headed out to my client’s. Unfortunately, we all overlapped and it was not comfortable. They are simply too lax for me to feel comfortable, especially with the way the numbers are rising.

I was glad to get home and do some serious decontamination. But it was unnecessarily stressful.

Remote Chat was fun.

My back bothered me, so I spent some time on the acupressure mat. But when I came back down, Office crashed AGAIN. This time, I didn’t get as skilled a tech and I ended up losing the afternoon while we tried to fix it. Finally, I managed to fix it, but by that time, I was in tears and so tired and frustrated I couldn’t get any more work done.

Office shouldn’t crash every damn week. This is why I hate PCs – they’re unreliable. I often said that investing in a Macbook was the reason I could switch to fulltime freelancing, and I stand by that. I regularly lost half my workday with the PC problems, and here it’s starting again. This computer – and the software – are barely six months old. I shouldn’t have constant problems. Nor should I have problems getting things fixed – I bought and paid for three years’ worth of coverage for everything.

As soon as I can afford a Macbook again, I will get one.

I lost all the time I had put aside to do the final proof of “Just Jump in and Fly” and to revise “Lockesley Hall.” I have to make up for that today, plus do at least one, maybe two ads for a client, plus write the next section on the Susanna Centlivre play.

I put down yet another cozy mystery and crossed yet another author off my list because she used “witch” as a slur. I’m sick of these white women pretending to support diversity and inclusion and then pulling this shit. In the same way “gypsy” and “Red Indian” are now recognized as slurs, calling someone “she’s such a witch” when you mean a mean person rather than a spellcasting badass who makes the world better is a slur. Not only is it a slur, it is a personal insult to me.

It’s one thing if a character uses it and the protag or core ensemble calls that person out or there’s accountability. But to act like it’s “just an expression” and something cute, fun, and contemporary that makes your character cool is unacceptable.

It proves you are NOT inclusive, promoting diversity, or tolerant. You’re a sham.

Write whatever you want – that’s your prerogative. But I will not purchase, read, or support authors who are hypocrites and who insult me. As is my right.

I am not your audience.

Zoom Meditation was great and helped a lot. I have bread on the rise – started it around 6 this morning. If I’m lucky, it will be done by noon.

A friend shared a sonnet she’s writing with me, for feedback. I was so honored. It’s a lovely piece, and i gave her the two points where it’s didn’t feel right, and she said it helped. Always glad to help friends with their work!

Peace, friends, and have a good day!

Thurs. Nov. 7, 2019: Incoming Storm

Thursday, November 7, 2019
Waxing Moon
Neptune Retrograde
Uranus Retrograde
Mercury Retrograde
Cloudy and cool

Hop on over to Gratitude and Growth for the latest on the garden.

There was no post on Ink-Dipped Advice this week. My back has limited the amount of time I can spend at the desk. I was working on the week’s post and was in so much pain, I had to stop. It’s a post on client voice, and it will go up next week.

This month’s Goddess Provisions box arrived and it was delightful. I’m thrilled with every single piece in it. This box has become vital to my self-care routine.

Willa and Charlotte are getting along much better. Now, we just have to re-integrate Tessa back into the mix. Time and patience. I keep reminding myself it takes time and patience, and for something this important, “no time” is not an option. I make sure to spend quality time with Tessa every day, so she doesn’t feel neglected.

Charlotte was on my lap on Tuesday night and Willa tried to hop up, which didn’t quite work. Charlotte was good — no hissing or growling. Willa complained, but that was it.

They also call a truce for Bedtime Snacks, which is pretty funny.

They’re starting to remember that they CAN get along. The more positive time they spend together, the more they’ll associate each other with good things. They have to learn that yoga/meditation time means QUIET, not climbing-all-over-the-human time, but they’ll get there.

Season 4 of SHETLAND is just heart-breaking. What a terrific show.

Excellent writing session on THE BARD’S LAMENT on Wednesday morning, and this morning. Some good editing work, too. Made a decision to cut yet another subplot of GRAVE REACH, and streamline it a bit more. Late in the game to be doing it, but necessary for the flow to work.

Client work. I’m always tired by Wednesdays. Great Remote Chat about stress.

Stopped at the grocery store on the way home. Worked on the book for review (I hope to get the review out either today or tomorrow). Worked on another client project. I’m meeting with the client tonight. Sent out an LOI for an exciting new position. I’m a long shot — I’m sure they want a Big Name for it. But I’d be a strong choice, and would love the opportunity. If I don’t try, then I can’t succeed, right?

Sent an LOI to work remotely with a client in Michigan on email campaigns. They sent back an online “test” — so, no, they’re out. If you’re too lazy to read my portfolio and expect free labor as part of the interview process, you’re out. Sent another LOI to a company in Colorado who says they’re “open” to working remotely with the right candidate, although they’d prefer someone local. There are plenty of good writers in Colorado, so I doubt I’ll get that, but again, I liked the company and the product, so it was worth the LOI. Am prepping an LOI to a company in Boston with a terrific mission, but I’m not sure if we could work out the logistics of the work.

Doing research on a publication so I can put together a good pitch for them.

Working on the questions for the 2020 GDR.

Good session on THE BARD’S LAMENT this morning. And a decent editing session. Because it’s not due until next year, I only set the goal for 2 pages a day. But I’m regularly writing more. Wouldn’t it be nice to get ahead on this draft, without dropping the ball on the other contracted projects? I’m enjoying the process. I also love doing research on harps.

Doing the work, putting in the time, redefining what I want from my work life.

 

Published in: on November 7, 2019 at 9:53 am  Comments Off on Thurs. Nov. 7, 2019: Incoming Storm  
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Wed. Nov. 6, 2019: One Step at A Time

Wednesday, November 6, 2019
Waxing Moon
Neptune Retrograde
Uranus Retrograde
Mercury Retrograde

They’re predicting snow for the end of the week. Snow!

Glad we got some raking done. Time to start bringing in the plants, before they die of the cold out there.

The past few days have been difficult. The Doubt Demons attacked, and I questioned my value in relation to just about everything.

My back is also giving me a lot of trouble. I had difficulty with some of the gentle movement in meditation class on Monday, and had to take a pain pill when I got home. Of course, when it wore off in the middle of the night, I was left sore and with the beginnings of a migraine.

The cats were doing really well for a few days, but were grumpy on Tuesday.

Tuesday, it rained. I had a good writing session on THE BARD’S LAMENT, and a good editing session. Went onsite with a client. Worked at the library. Worked on the book for review and another client project. Started pulling in the big plants that overwinter in the garage.

One foot in front of the other. I’m trying to keep my head down and enjoy the work. I’m not enjoying social media right now, and spending less time on it. One group, in particular, has become too non-reciprocal for me to continue. I’d made the decision to leave in December a few months ago, but there was part of me hoping something would shift and I would decide to stay. But, no. The person who’s supposed to be leading the group just can’t be bothered. So why should the rest of us shout into the void? I’ll fulfill my commitment through December, and then I’m done.

Sent an LOI to a potential client about whom I’m on the fence, but it might be worth it to do a few projects together. Sent out another LOI to a place that sounded interesting. Their response is that I’m supposed to take a personality test and rewrite three pages of their website as part of the interview process. No, thanks.

Basically, at this point, I’m just trying to survive Mercury Retrograde.

I’m working on the questions for GDR 2020. The theme is “Transition and Transformation.” That should be interesting. I’ll let you know when they’re up.

It feels almost blasphemous to admit it, but I don’t miss Nano. It was the right choice for me this year, and not fraught with unnecessary ego and guilt.
Read THE UNWRITTEN LIBRARY by AJ Hackwith. I was worried, early on, it would get too religious for my taste. But it didn’t. It’s weird and wacky and wonderful. I loved it.

Back to the page.

 

Published in: on November 6, 2019 at 6:11 am  Comments Off on Wed. Nov. 6, 2019: One Step at A Time  
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Tues. July 23, 2019: Physical Manifestations?

Tuesday, July 23, 2019
Waning Moon
Jupiter Retrograde
Pluto Retrograde
Saturn Retrograde
Neptune Retrograde
Mercury Retrograde
Rainy, hot, humid

The weekend was brutally hot. It was bad. Difficult to get anything done.

I also fretted and stressed all weekend about this week with one of my clients, which I knew would be off-the-charts stressful. It’s easy to say “don’t think about it” or “detach” — but it doesn’t work that way, at least not for me.

I worked hard in the early mornings (usually up by four) to get the fans going and cool down the place. I had to shut everything by 7 AM, and then keep fans going inside. The humidity and lack of breeze kept everything heavy and oppressive.

Of course, there were power outages. Why should Eversource actually provide the services for which they exist and overcharge?

Read a lot. Jean-Luc Bannalec’s THE MISSING CORPSE, set in Brittany, which was interesting. The way the book is structured is so different from the way an American or British or Australian mystery is constructed.

Re-read Susan Cheever’s AMERICAN BLOOMSBURY, which I enjoyed even more this time around.

Tried to stay quiet and cool, and keep the cats the same.

I’d done some research on Friday about possible article markets, and I’m working on pitches. I hope to get at least some of them out this week.

The 2020 SPELL-A-DAY ALMANAC author copies arrived. They look wonderful! My work is in there under the Cerridwen Iris Shea byline. I’ll have to do some updates on that website, and on the blog.

I’m still waiting for payment for a freelance job for a local client I did nearly a month ago. It was invoiced on July 1. On July 15, the client apologized for the delay and promised to take care of it. It’s still not here. That is not okay. That money is marked for specific bills that need to be paid.

I’m sick of the attitude in this area that paying for work is optional. That, along with the attitude of hiring the cheapest person who is also the least threatening, instead of the best person for the job has gotten real old real fast.

I got out some LOIs. There was a communications job at a theatre in Maine that looked interesting. Unfortunately, instead of accepting a resume and letter, they demand filling out a specific application that is one of the most insulting things I’ve ever read. Some of the questions are also now illegal. So I’m not even going to pitch to them.

I had to go onsite at my client’s early yesterday and stay late. Same today. It went better than expected, but was still a tough day.

I’m having terrible trouble with my back. Every movement causes pain. I’m wondering if my frustrations from the past few weeks are manifesting in this particular type of “stuck” pain.

Meditation was much needed.

Between the heat and the stress, I’ve lost some of the momentum on GRAVE REACH. I hope to regain it in the next few days.

Awakened last night by tornado alerts. Got things together in case we had to go down to the basement. Lots of thunder and lightning, but it passed.

Back to the page.

Published in: on July 23, 2019 at 8:48 am  Comments Off on Tues. July 23, 2019: Physical Manifestations?  
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Thursday, March 24, 2011


One of the Alberta Spruces by the front door

Thursday, March 24, 2011
Waning Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Snowing – a lot

I’ll be off line most of the day, hurtling through the snow to take Costume Imp home.

My back’s been crippling me, unfortunately. Tuesday, we didn’t go out and about much, because I couldn’t do much; same with Wednesday. I have an appointment on April 5, but that seems very far away right now. AND I’m coming down with a cold. I haven’t had a cold in ages — I forgot how inconvenient they are. I don’t feel that bad — it’s at the annoying stage, and I’m at the whiny stage, so I know I’m pretty much okay.

Finished the layout for the course ebook; it still needs final proofing and page numbers, and then it’s ready for participants. I’m looking forward to Saturday — it will be a really fun day. I hope lots of you will join us! Hop on over to The Confident Freelancer page to register.

Got some correspondence done. Have to fight with Comcast yet again — the only bill that was correct was the very first one.

Most of the day was spent on conference work; the rest was spent on student work. And laundry. I find the homework for the class I’m taking a little puzzling, but I’m in someone else’s playground and it’s their rules. I’m rolling with it and seeing what I can learn.

Started reading a book that looked interesting in the library. It lost me by page 8.

Finished Allan Lacy’s THE INVITING GARDEN. I like most of it, but his contemptuous disdain for the meanings of plants and their folk uses offended me, so it’s not a book I’m looking to add to my permanent shelf. Plants DO have meaning; yes, they are imposed by humans (duh), but usually it has a relevance to something a human has learned from or about a plant. And there’s a reason herbal remedies have been used for thousands of years — when used correctly and respectfully, they work.

Take, for instance, my cough concoction — it’s a tea that includes horehound and coltsfoot and a few other things. When Imp arrived, he had a bad cough. I whipped some up, made him down a great, big cup, and he’s fine. I had a cup myself last night, to prevent the cough from migrating down into my chest. I forgot how vile it tastes (extra honey helps), but the cough is staying out of my chest, just tickling my throat. If the throat tickle continues, I’ll do some more with horehound and probably slippery elm. It won’t mask the symptoms, the way a prescription or over-the counter drug would (and, yes, sometimes even I just want it masked, especially at night to get some sleep), but this remedy will actually get to the cause of the problem and remove it. I have a six hour drive in a snowstorm ahead of me — cold medicine that’s going to make me drowsy is not an option.

When we went to bed after last night’s news, the weatherman said that the storm lost its bite and we’d just have a coating. It’s coming down pretty heavily, and it’s a good deal more than a coating, so it will be interesting to see what happens by the time we have to leave.

In the meantime, I hope you’ll join us for The Confident Freelancer on Saturday for a full day of motivation and inspiration and just plain writing fun. Information and registration here.

Devon

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Tuesday, March 22, 2011
Waning Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Rainy and cold

The Confident Freelancer is a lively, information-packed day of sessions to motivate, inspire, and boost writing productivity. Join Lori Widmer and me this Saturday!

I’m looking forward to some percolation time next week. I’ve gotten so excited about all there is to do here that I’m not being protective enough of my writing time, much less the percolation time. I need a lot of time doing what looks like nothing. It’s vital to my creative process. I’m still learning how to structure my day to have that, do my writing when I’m freshest, and yet not let the other commitments fall by the wayside. I’ve also got to be careful not to get locked into anything, and remain flexible, while still protecting the time I need to make things happen.

I felt groggy and somewhat unfocused (probably because I took something for the back pain the previous night). But I commented on student work (the work perks me up, they’re making wonderful progress), worked on the layout for the ebook, revised the exercises for the next Dialogue workshop taking place in April. We have only two weeks instead of four, and it’s on an email loop instead of a board, so I have to modify the way I “usually do things.”

Started the steampunk workshop, which I think will be really fun. It’s always good to take classes and see how other teachers do things, as well as simply getting new information.

Imp and I dashed out to the grocery store to get a few things, and it was seriously snowing by the time we got back. I gave in and took the Canadian pain pills — helped my back, but I was high as a kite (which I hate). Made an appointment with an acupuncturist not too far away April 5, but I might have to try and get in somewhere sooner.

Imp made a peach/blueberry cobbler. It snowed well into the evening, but didn’t stick.

I tried to finish the material for Confidential Job #1. It’s well done, but not enjoyable, so I struggled to get through it. A fair and objective write up will be a challenge. Did some promotion for The Confident Freelancer.

Watched some TV at night. Woke up around 2:30 with a scratchy throat, and the downstairs toilet is being cranky. So I’ll have to deal with both of those. I’m pounding back the echinacea and the cranberry juice (since I’m allergic to citrus and zinc just makes me sicker). I’ll have some horehound tea with lemon and honey later, too.

Out this morning for coffee/early lunch with a friend, and then an intensive day of work on my workshop, the one I’m taking, and The Confident Freelancer. You can visit us on Facebook as well.

Devon

Published in: on March 22, 2011 at 6:55 am  Comments (5)  
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Saturday, January 29, 2011

Saturday, January 29, 2011
Waning Moon
Saturn Retrograde
Snowy and cold

The only thing I did outside yesterday was go out and get the papers and deposit a check in my mother’s bank. Driving was tough on my back, but it wasn’t far, and all was accomplished.

I’m writing about my Green Pepper Experiment on Gratitude and Growth, so go have a look.

I managed to do three loads of laundry — the Yuletide fabric can finally be put away, nice and clean! The vacuuming had to wait until today or tomorrow, because I couldn’t handle the hose for the central vac. I always feels like I’m in HARRY POTTER wrestling the mega-snake.

Didn’t get enough writing done, got a bunch of admin done, caught up on the workshop. I can’t believe it ends tomorrow!

Finished Susan Wittig Albert’s DEAD MAN’S BONES, which was very good.

Started a book by an author whose previous work I really enjoyed, but this one, for me, misses the mark. It’s supposed to be a modern comedy of manners, but I can’t find humor or satire in it. I find formulaic cliches, which, if this was a comedy of manners, or a satire, would have been exploded or at least turned inside out. But they’re just there. And I don’t like any of the protagonists. It’s one thing to have an unreliable narrator, or a narrator who isn’t the best of human beings — a skilled writer can make you care. But the protags in this book are ordinary in the way only a fictional character can be, whiny, and refuse to learn from experience. I realize there are plenty of people like that. I don’t keep them in my life (whiny and refusing to learn from experience are cut out — I find uniqueness in everyone I know), and I don’t want to spend my free time with them in a book, especially if, halfway through, there’s been zero character growth.

When something like this happens with an author whose work I’ve liked before, I always feel guilty. Authors need reader support. They also need the freedom to write whatever they want, and try new things, even if they don’t always work, and not lose support. In this case, I’d read this author’s work again; I just don’t like this book. If the next three books or so don’t work for me, then I’d probably stop. But if I want the freedom to write whatever I please, even if it doesn’t always work, I have to support other writers who do the same.

Have to run a few errands this morning before the next storm hits. I think it will hit sooner than they’re saying — I have the pre-storm headache. So maybe I will just stay home and work!

The back is better — I’m mostly uncomfortable rather than in acute pain, and I have a better range of motion. I just hope the snow isn’t another six inches, because if I have to shovel again, I am screwed.

Devon

December 31, 2010 — New Year’s Eve

Friday, December 31, 2010
Waning Moon
Neptune Retrograde
Cloudy and mild
New Year’s Eve

I can’t believe this year is over, and it’s been quite a roller coaster of a year!

If you’d like to see my evaluation for 2010, which I thought would be depressing, but actually turned out to be quite enlightening (for me), hop on over to the Goals, Dreams, and Resolutions blog, which has been sorely neglected in the past few months.

My back kind of limited a lot of activity yesterday. I had to do a bunch of paperwork dealing with various transitional business — really, most of these companies are staffed by morons. There are enough people looking for work that companies should dump the incompetent and hire the intelligent. Oh, wait, that would mean they had to pay people a fair wage for a fair day’s work and the intelligent might actually question the corporation’s culture of screwing the public, and that would never do!

But the auto insurance kerflamma is sorted out. Turns out they sent the bill BEFORE they checked my driving record, and it’s even less than the original quote, thanks to me being a careful driver in the past (and now I have the pressure to continue)!

Paid a bunch of bills, so I can go into the New Year without bills hanging over my head.

Played with the cats, who wanted attention.

Filled the car to bursting with garbage and recycling and took it all to the dump. 80% of our garbage is recycling — we really generate very little stuff for the landfill, which is good.

Went grocery shopping and spent far more than I intended — I thought when you have a list you stay under budget? Even with a list, I bought more than I thought I would — and I stuck to the list! Also stocked up on some wine for next week. For a state with such tight blue laws, they have a lot of awesome wine shops around here!

I was in so much pain in the morning that I considered a trip to the emergency room. But, again, it would be a lot of money and tests and all they can do is give me a stronger painkiller, which doesn’t solve the problem. Alleve did NOTHING, didn’t even take the edge off, and neither did Excedrin. Spent most of the afternoon lying on the couch reading, with a heating pad on my back.

Yet another customer service person from Verizon told me that they “can’t” do anything to help me unless I buy the blocker. I ignored them, and I think I’ve finagled it so that it’s blocked — I’m not getting messages every 15 seconds any more.

Costume Imp and I are getting next week figured out — it’s going to be a lot of fun.

Saw a lovely rocking chair for sale for a great price on Craigslist – I was hoping to pick it up today, but haven’t heard back from the owner. If I can’t get it today, it’ll have to be next week, and they’ll probably sell it to someone else. Oh, well. I’ll either get it or I won’t.

The appliance repair place called and will come today to fix the washer. I can do laundry here before the New Year! I hate starting the new year with dirty clothes!

I also want to do my hair today — I want to start the New Year with shiny hair AND clean clothes!

My hurricane cylinders arrived yesterday (they weren’t scheduled to arrive until Monday) and this time, the UPS guy HANDED me the box instead of throwing it from the truck. Which is good, since they’re glass. They are beautiful. They fit the candlestands perfectly, although they’re taller than I expected, but look great. I washed them last night, let them dry and they’re up now. It will make things safer.

I’m looking forward to a nice, cozy celebration here at home tonight (I’m not big on New Year’s shindigs, and I don’t have to be banned from my own home until 1 AM, like I was in NYC). Yes, when I lived a block from Times Square, if I left the house after 6 PM, I was not allowed back in until after 1 AM, even though I lived there! Isn’t that awful? I usually had a show on New Year’s Eve (thankfully, most shows now only do a matinee), and then I was forced to go to a party. I don’t like New Year’s Eve — too much forced joviality for me — I like to celebrate quietly at home with one or two people.

Once I moved out of the city and wasn’t working full-time anymore, I refused to accept work for New Year’s. I did a yoga retreat upstate for several years, which was great. After that year where I was on the train when the year turned, I decided no more of other people deciding how I start my year!

So, I’ve got some errands to run today, and the repairman to wait for, and my hair to do, and some shelves to put up in the basement to sort the dishes I don’t need every day, some writing to do, and then enjoy sweeping the old year out of the back door and welcoming the New Year in the front!

I’ve got my bayberry candle for tonight; my bayberry incense for tonight and tomorrow, and the stuff I need for the dawn ceremony I do on New Year’s.

I want a peaceful end to this year and a quiet, fun start to 2011!

Happy New Year!

Devon

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Thursday, December 30, 2010
Waning Moon
Neptune Retrograde
Mercury DIRECT
Sunny and cold

Drove to Wareham and spent my lovely giftcard at Target. Got a bunch of organizational stuff for the house, plus a new thermal carafe coffee-maker (now I don’t have to wrap a dishtowel around the coffeepot to keep it warm), and, on a frivolous note, a new purple cloche hat. I love cloche hats, and it’s really cute!

While we were there, we nipped in to the Michael’s there (much nicer than the one in Hyannis) and to DSW, just because. I fell in love with a pair of unique Liz Claiborne suede flats, but they were a size 8. I wear 8 1/2-9. Of course, they were the only pair in the store. I figured what the heck, I’ll try them on.

They fit PERFECTLY. And were on the clearance rack. And are very, very comfortable. I can wear them with pretty much everything I own.

Stopped at a garden store on the way back, but they didn’t have anything (on sale) that I wanted; stopped at a well-known fruit market, which had some cool stuff, but $1/apple? Really? Uh, not very often. Especially for common varieties.

Iris gave us a big scare because, for a couple of hours, we couldn’t find her. We called and called and tossed the house upside down. We finally found her asleep in the bottom of the laundry basket, under a quilt I haven’t yet put away. Damn cat! Nearly gave us a heart attack!

They run and hide when the door opens, so it’s a pretty good bet they don’t dash out when we’re unloading the car (plus, I usually close the garage door), but one never knows. They’re quick little things, and if one of them slithered out . . .

The Christmas cactus is bursting into white bloom in my writing room, which is lovely.

Today, we have to go to the dump and then go grocery shopping. Word from CT is that the grocery store shelves down there are bare (trucks can’t get in because the snow’s not yet cleared away), so we come bearing supplies. And then I have to stop by the insurance broker’s again — there’s yet more kerflamma with the car insurance — we got a statement from a “group” including our new company that has NOTHING to do with what we agreed on, and is nearly $500 more than I was quoted. No. I don’t care about the details. Make that number go away and change the piece of paper to reflect what we discussed. I don’t care about the details. Do it.

Verizon kept at me yesterday, claiming they were trying to “help” me — of course, for a price. I made it very clear that I know part of their responsibility under law is to protect me from harassment — without extorting me for it. Either they step up, or they, too, will be named in the legal complaint filed. I’m not wasting hours on the phone with them; I’m not paying additional fees. Meet your side of the contract, or I file against you.

My contract with Verizon is up in mid-September of 2011. (Remember when my mother’s phone died and they wouldn’t let me replace it without agreeing to a new two year contract? Shysters). Hopefully, I can buy an iPhone then and just switch everything over to AT&T, or switch to some other provider. Not that I think AT&T is all that great either, but Verizon needs to step up service to keep me as a customer (they already lost my business for landline and internet). I’m sure part of this is that the regulated fees, in general, are cheaper in MA, so my monthly bill is slightly less, so they’re trying to get more money out of me in a different way. And I can’t just add a service for a few months and then cancel it — according to them, it would be part of a new contract and mean extending the current contract, which I’m not going to do.

My back is in very bad shape, mostly because I’m just taking pain block instead of dealing with the problem. But certain things need to be done within a certain time frame, and there’s no one else to do them.

I want to get some writing done today, and finish polishing the Plum lectures. Hopefully, I can post the welcome and first lessons for both workshops today or tomorrow. Since I’ll be offline on the 2nd and most of the 3rd, I want to make sure the students have everything they need to start.

I am so ready for this Mercury Retrograde to be over, I can’t even believe it. But at least I got a pair of great chairs and some other much-needed items for the house out of it!

Devon